DOT and Dept. of Tourism explain why the two agencies need to work together

WISCONSIN DELLS, Wis (WMTV) - The Department of Transportation-designee, Craig Thompson, and the Tourism Secretary-designee, Sarah Meaney, outlined the importance of the two agencies working together on Wed. morning.

The press conference was held at the Kalahari Resort in Wisconsin Dells. Gov. Tony Evers’ proposed state budget includes new revenue sources for the upkeep of roads, which Thompson and Meaney said are key to growing the state’s tourism economy.

The revenue source for the road work would in part come from an increased .08 cent per gallon gas tax. Thompson said, through the governor’s proposed budget, drivers would also see cost savings by repealing the minimum markup law.

“It’s not about the bridges themselves, it’s not about even about the bus systems themselves, it’s about what they mean to our economy and how they connect it,” Thompson said.

Gov. Evers proposed an additional five million for tourism marketing and to create a new office of outdoor recreation.

“Just imagine how much more revenue we can generate when we work together, but we need to have safe roads and bridges in order to do that,” Meaney said.

The new budget year begins in July. If the Republican-controlled Legislature does not pass it by then, the old budget will remain in effect for the time being.